Movies Books Music Food Tv Shows Technology Politics Video Games Parenting Fashion Green Living more >

China Girl > Wiki


"China Girl" is a song co-written by David Bowie and Iggy Pop during their years in Berlin, first appearing on Pop's album The Idiot (1977). It was more widely popularized when it was rerecorded and released by Bowie on his album Let's Dance (1983). Bowie decided to put the song on his album when Pop, his friend and musical collaborator, was in financial straits (due to his struggle with drug addiction) and was close to facing bankruptcy. Bowie decided to release the song on Let's Dance so that Pop could collect half the royalties (as co-writer of the track) and get back on his feet financially.[citation needed]

An edit of David Bowie's 1983 version was also released as a single.

Under the auspices of Nile Rodgers, the song was given a much more commercial sheen than Pop's darker, more roughly-produced version.

It continues the theme established in the video for "Let's Dance". The song was again edited for single release, but attracted more attention for its striking video. David Mallet’s clip, shot mainly in the Chinatown district of Sydney, Australia and on a houseboat on Sydney Harbour featured Geeling Ng lying naked in the surf with Bowie (a visual reference to the film From Here to Eternity). The latter's bared buttocks caused the video to generate some lurid tabloid headlines, though the clip went on to win an MTV award. Versions of the clip included on subsequent video and DVD compilations are slightly censored.

The UK single release reached #2 for one week on June 14, 1983, being kept off the top position by "Every Breath You Take" by The Police. The US release reached #10.

The song was a regular for Bowie's live shows for the rest of the 1980s and was even rehearsed for his appearance at the 1985 London Live Aid concert but along with the songs "Fascination" and "Five Years" was eventually dropped due to time constraints. The song later resurfaced as a concert favourite from 1999 onwards.

edit this info


Label:  EMI America
Release Date:  June 4, 1983
What's your opinion on China Girl?
16 Ratings: +3.1
You have exceeded the maximum length.
More China Girl reviews
review by . May 20, 2009
China Girl (aka China Girls) is a Iggy Pop/David Bowie composition.  The original version of the song was covered by Iggy Pop during his detox phase (David Bowie helped him kick his horse habit and they worked together on this song) and it's a little more explicit in detail.  Bowie's version is a little more veiled but the song theme remains the same as the song's character is total infatuated with this "china girl" and would give her anything to be with her.  I love how the video …
Related Topics

#8 hit single by Soft Cell in 1982

Thompson Twins - album cover

80's synth band

#1 (3 weeks) hit single by The Human League in 1982

First to Review
© 2014 Lunch.com, LLC All Rights Reserved
Lunch.com - Relevant reviews by real people.
This is you!
Ranked #
Last login
Member since